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Sarasota city commissioners open to exploring annexing Siesta Key

Siesta Key was unable to incorporate and become its own city. Now, leaders have been talking with Sarasota about a merger.

SARASOTA, Fla. — Sarasota city commissioners are open to the idea of annexing part of Siesta Key. Groups in the barrier island are upset about the high-rise hotels recently approved for construction on their beaches. They’ve wanted to have a greater say in county decisions.

Earlier this month, Siesta Key tried but failed to incorporate and become its own city. Sarasota Mayor Erik Arroyo told 10 Tampa Bay the city of Sarasota's code and overlay district would help protect the community from unwanted future developments on the barrier island. 

At Tuesday’s meeting, city commissioners said there could be pros and cons, even potentially driving the mill rate down. The mayor says the $6 billion in added property value could lower the costs. 

Commissioners voted to see if Siesta Key leaders are interested in exploring the options. From there, commissioners would need to possibly hire a consultant to put together a report on the cost of services for Siesta Key so there could be a series of public hearings on the issue.